Iceland Launches Fund for Island States Skip to content

Iceland Launches Fund for Island States

The Icelandic government has launched the Small Island Developing States (SIDS) fund and will contribute USD 4.5 million (EUR 3.1) to the fund over the next three years, as Iceland’s Prime Minister Geir H. Haarde announced at a press conference in the headquarters of the United Nations in New York on Tuesday.

The purpose of the fund is to reduce poverty, encourage sustainable harnessing of natural resources, diminish damaging influences of climate change and work towards gender equality, Morgunbladid reports.

The fund will increase Iceland’s cooperation in development work with small island states and, as Haarde mentioned at the press conference on Tuesday, the fund has roots in the Island Growth Initiative (IGI) project, which was founded in 2007 as part of Iceland’s policy to increase cooperation with small island states.

Haarde said in his announcement that other island states, like Tonga and some Caribbean islands, are natural allies for Iceland and that it is important to strengthen relations between island states. “We believe that other island states—which rely on their nature and its resources and are therefore often vulnerable towards climate change—can benefit from our experience.”

“We want to contribute by understanding the circumstances and needs of particular island states and work together as equals in the global arena,” Haarde said, adding that the Icelandic government is grateful for the cooperation that it has enjoyed through the Association of Small Island States (AOSIS) within the UN.

The governments of single island states can apply for a budget from the fund for their projects and a six-person advisory group will be established to review applications and grant funds.

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